Overcoming a learning disability

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Feb 19, 2016 4:38 AM GMT

    Most of us going through our schooling years, hate or hated math. Its the most hated subject out of all the 'requirements' hands down. Beside hating math, which I have at least three relatives who are now math teachers including one of my grand mothers, who has passed (dads side). I have a learning disability when it comes to math.

    These learning disabilities tend to run in families. My niece has a reading disability called Dyslexia, as explained below. My disability with math is very strange, unless its more common than I think it is, just people don't talk about it, but I want to know if any of you have the same issue.

    The only way math and higher levels of it, makes sense to me is if the math 'problem' is actually applied in a real life, say work situation. A very good example of this would be doing your own taxes and having to understand percentage, and how that percentage is applied.

    The opposite, just listening to an instructor, say in front of a classroom black board, discuss and explain percentages and their fractions and or linear conversions completely turns off my brain. Every time I have to use some sort of mathematics in work, I have to use it as if I am applying the problem to really solve

    Its kind of funny, I have this friend, who is now a chemist by profession. And he is a wizard at math, not just any math though, level 5-6 of college Calculus!. Not only does he apply this type math to his everyday work, but he enjoys doing these calculus problems just for fun! Much like an artist likes to doodle. But, as I excelled in economics and its understanding, my friend hates economics and does very poorly in its understanding and application, he can barely balance his check book!

    As someone older, been in the workforce, this is what I see wrong with todays college level requirements. Some colleges now offer help for those with these types disabilities in order to assist people with them to attain higher level education. I could not grasp certain math courses taught in a classroom, but if the math is applied, such as geometry, in one of my blueprint specifications at work, I am fine with finding a solution. This could be why mathematics in general gets a really bad rap, without applying it, its dull and boring. At least in a classroom English class, you can apply your own writing style. In a classroom math class, there is a static, and status quo way to solve the problem. Just as with Dyslexia, if schools changed the way math is taught, then more people might enjoy it. zzzzzzzzzzzz


    Dyslexia

    Dyslexia, also known as reading disorder, is characterized by trouble with reading despite normal intelligence.[1] Different people are affected to varying degrees.[2] Problems may include difficulties in spelling words, reading quickly, writing words, "sounding out" words in the head, pronouncing words when reading aloud and understanding what one reads.[2][3] Often these difficulties are first noticed at school.[4] When someone who previously could read loses their ability, it is known as alexia.[2] The difficulties are involuntary and people with this disorder have a normal desire to learn.[2]

    The cause of dyslexia is believed to involve both genetic and environmental factors.[4] Some cases run in families.[2] It often occurs in people with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and is associated with similar difficulties with numbers.[4] It may begin in adulthood as the result of a traumatic brain injury, stroke, or dementia.[1] The underlying mechanisms are problems within the brain's language processing.[2] Dyslexia is diagnosed through a series of tests of memory, spelling, vision, and reading skills.[5] Dyslexia is separate from reading difficulties caused by insufficient teaching; or either hearing or vision problems.[4]

    Treatment involves adjusting teaching methods to meet the person's needs.[1] While not curing the underlying problem, it may decrease the degree of symptoms.[6] Treatments targeting vision are not effective.[7] Dyslexia is the most common learning disability,[8] affecting 3–7 % of the population;[4][9] however, up to 20% may have some degree of symptoms.[10] While dyslexia is more often diagnosed in men,[4] it has been suggested that it affects men and women equally.[8] Dyslexia occurs in all areas of the world.[4] Some believe that dyslexia should be best considered as a different way of learning, with both benefits and downsides
  • FRE0

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    Feb 19, 2016 6:47 PM GMT
    Probably the reason many people hate mathematics is that many math teachers don't know how to teach it effectively.
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    Feb 19, 2016 9:31 PM GMT
    FRE0 saidProbably the reason many people hate mathematics is that many math teachers don't know how to teach it effectively.



    True, I've had this argument with my cousin, who teaches math at a well known Midwestern high school

    He tells me, he has "his own method" of making sure his students comprehend. Some of this is 'part ego' of the teacher themselves though, that is why the discussion becomes an argument or a disagreement on the methods of teaching.

    While in college though, it is highly recommended that students take co-op or intern so that they can apply that math in real application. I remember doing co-op, through the college during my studies to gain insightful real world applicable experience, and this was back in the late 80's


    "how to teach it effectively", is purely objective. Especially for math, the 'standard' has not worked for many, my cousin and I have discussed this at length especially when I told him about my own learning disability with math. With math, in my opinion, teachers have to bring the real world into the classroom, and then re-standardize the new methods, otherwise it will never be truly effective for the majority. icon_idea.gif



  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Feb 19, 2016 9:37 PM GMT
    Math, lol.

    What about growing up gay in a str8 world?

    Or left-handed?

    Or, gasp, a left-handed gay?!?

    Math....pfffft
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Feb 19, 2016 9:39 PM GMT
    bon_pan saidMath, lol.

    What about growing up gay in a str8 world?

    Or left-handed?

    Or, gasp, a left-handed gay?!?

    Math....pfffft




    I hope you are being sarcastic icon_wink.gif
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    Feb 19, 2016 11:35 PM GMT
    FRE0 saidProbably the reason many people hate mathematics is that many math teachers don't know how to teach it effectively.


    Your comment does hold some credibility, but keep in mind that all professions have inadequate members who should not be practicing in their chosen field.

    The mere Possession of a teaching license does not necessarily make one a good teacher in the classroom. Having said that, we also must keep in mind that some students are placed in the wrong academic level which does play into the equation when examining the failure or rate of difficulty in any course. However, in the majority of cases parents insist that their child must remain in academic (University) math rather than switch to applied (College)math, despite the fact that their child is struggling to no end!

    Success of a child begins with accepting the academic capabilities of that child and ensuring that the child is provided with the resources and accommodation necessary to ensure a promising and rewarding future for that child, be it workplace, college or a university pathway. Let's keep in mind that educating a child is a communal responsibility and not just the sole responsibility of a teacher....

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    Feb 20, 2016 1:10 AM GMT
    Musclefitness_101 said
    FRE0 saidProbably the reason many people hate mathematics is that many math teachers don't know how to teach it effectively.


    Your comment does hold some credibility, but keep in mind that all professions have inadequate members who should not be practicing in their chosen field.

    The mere Possession of a teaching license does not necessarily make one a good teacher in the classroom. Having said that, we also must keep in mind that some students are placed in the wrong academic level which does play into the equation when examining the failure or rate of difficulty in any course. However, in the majority of cases parents insist that their child must remain in academic (University) math rather than switch to applied (College)math, despite the fact that their child is struggling to no end!

    Success of a child begins with accepting the academic capabilities of that child and ensuring that the child is provided with the resources and accommodation necessary to ensure a promising and rewarding future for that child, be it workplace, college or a university pathway. Let's keep in mind that educating a child is a communal responsibility and not just the sole responsibility of a teacher....





    ^Um, that's bullshit. That's like forcing your young adult to play high school or college sports because one of the parents did that when he or she really wants to play in the band.

    The way you put it, the parents are in some kind of competition with other parents regarding their young adults achievements. This is an ego problem with parents, not with the young adult. You have taken what the young adult wants and or is capable of, right out of the equation

    This is the main cause of parental/offspring resentment within a family unit.
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    Feb 20, 2016 5:38 AM GMT
    It's possible that the capability for abstract thought is a genetic predisposition. But if that's true, then why are Americans, who are supposed to be genetically diverse, so much worse at it than the rest of the world?

    I'm not sure that inability to do simple math is even considered a "disability" any more. If I ever put math into exam questions, it's trivial stuff, like multiplying by 2 or 10. 90% of college sophomores just leave those questions blank. It's the same at a City Council or County Comission meeting. If anybody brings up numbers, everybody just stares out the window or something until it's over with.

    Magical thinking and witch-hunting are all we need these days. Get with the program!
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    Feb 20, 2016 2:35 PM GMT
    It's called Dyscalculia and it is a specific learning disability. You can read more about it here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dyscalculia.

    I've struggled with math my entire life and it always lowered my standardized test scores. Fortunately, I did well in other areas to help compensate.

    I can't do math in my head, I could never memorize multiplication tables, and I could never remember formulas. I also tend to transpose numbers and have to go over them very carefully. Fortunately, I learned Excel and love it, and the formulas make sense to me. I can create great spreadsheets that always do the calculation for me. I'm also glad phones have calculators now!

  • wild_sky360

    Posts: 1492

    Feb 20, 2016 7:44 PM GMT
    ELNathB, lately I've been considering that the much maligned Common Core elementary curriculum; specifically the math aspect, might actually be addressing the perceptual obstacle you describe.

    At times I find myself struggling to help my 9 yo nephew with his math homework because they insist a problem be solved in a certain way that is unfamiliar to anyone over 30. The required methods are unnecessarily complex and time consuming. Most would probably never choose to solve a problem with the strategies, but I've come to understand that the purpose is to instill another broader perspective beyond rote memorization of otherwise more efficient formulas. Perhaps it is also designed not to exclude people who require a more visual or applicable context.

    I can definitely see why parents are critical. Time will tell if this generation is better served.
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    Feb 21, 2016 5:08 AM GMT
    wild_sky360 saidELNathB, lately I've been considering that the much maligned Common Core elementary curriculum; specifically the math aspect, might actually be addressing the perceptual obstacle you describe.

    At times I find myself struggling to help my 9 yo nephew with his math homework because they insist a problem be solved in a certain way that is unfamiliar to anyone over 30. The required methods are unnecessarily complex and time consuming. Most would probably never choose to solve a problem with the strategies, but I've come to understand that the purpose is to instill another broader perspective beyond rote memorization of otherwise more efficient formulas. Perhaps it is also designed not to exclude people who require a more visual or applicable context.

    I can definitely see why parents are critical. Time will tell if this generation is better served.




    I have never seen a common core math lesson yet such as you have, so I cant agree with you there, but part of my adult profession is standardization. Maybe there is something in the specific methods of common core math that have many people frustrated, the many people that are used to doing math in the status quo manner or the ones that have no math disabilities with the current method.

    My niece overcame her Dyslexia because there are proven methods of irregular teaching known for this disability. I don't see why the education and medical systems cant come up with different methods of teaching math as well. Maybe the new method in common core just is 'off' a little bit and needs to be tweaked or redone entirely, we need standardization, but the input needs to make sense to everyone.
  • wild_sky360

    Posts: 1492

    Feb 22, 2016 4:51 AM GMT
    I think the frustration stems from unfamiliarity and a feeling of why reinvent the wheel. My point was that I think I see the logic now, especially in light of your issue. I'm only speculating that it might be part of the motivation for changes. I think the standard explanation is that it better prepares students for more advanced math to have a broader concept in early education. It's not teaching a better way to solve a problem, only a better understanding of the process. It could have a dual benefit though

    If you're interested in an example there are youtube videos of common core math.

    This is the one that seemed to make sense and explained the thought process

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X_CK1e0Lmxw
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    Feb 22, 2016 5:09 AM GMT
    I tried to overcome my learning disability, but never could learn how.
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    Feb 22, 2016 6:37 AM GMT
    wild_sky360 saidI think the frustration stems from unfamiliarity and a feeling of why reinvent the wheel. My point was that I think I see the logic now, especially in light of your issue. I'm only speculating that it might be part of the motivation for changes. I think the standard explanation is that it better prepares students for more advanced math to have a broader concept in early education. It's not teaching a better way to solve a problem, only a better understanding of the process. It could have a dual benefit though

    If you're interested in an example there are youtube videos of common core math.

    This is the one that seemed to make sense and explained the thought process

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X_CK1e0Lmxw




    Yeah, I 'see' it, literally. Especially using the rectangle example, breaking down the numbers. This concept is why our paper money is written in 10's. (10's, 20's, 50's, 100's, 500's, 1000's). (1's and 5's are single digits and would break down into metal change, quarters). If you have ever worked a cash register and giving and receiving change, I would imagine this is how most people learn the concept. Say if paper money was all by 5's instead of 10's. Transactions with 25's, 45's, 65's, 115's bills would be much more difficult to learn, especially when giving change.

    Now I have never worked a cash register in my life but I can see how this type of learning can be useful when using cash. You would be surprised at the amount of people that say go through the drive thru and don't realize they have been short changed by the drive thru attendant when they drive off. When this happens, neither the drive thru attendant nor the driver understand the visual concept of giving, receiving correct change.

    Much of this learning loss is due in part to everyone using credit cards for simple transactions like going thru the fast food drive thru or buying a gallon of milk, which is absolutely absurd. Small stuff like that I always use cash and whatever change. I keep a small glass in my car's holder just for change!

    My example of the cash register, is a, applicable, visual concept in math. Although most electronic registers todays, tell the clerk how much change is due, just to speed up the process and reduce accounting errors. What if the power went out and you had no way to find out the amount of change due, you would then have to rely on your math skills, these electronic registers are not fool proof either, they and the scanners can make mistakes. I have a good idea now of the common core math concept. I am sure it is more difficult in the advanced type of math.


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    Feb 22, 2016 6:53 PM GMT
    paulflexes saidI tried to overcome my learning disability, but never could learn how.


    Hmmmm..I think I see what you did there...icon_wink.gif